Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Peach Frangipane Tart

"Frangipane." The word itself intimidated me for the longest time. I knew what the actual substance was ~ it was delicious. To be more specific, Sharon Tyler Herbst's New Food Lover's Companion defines it as, "a rich [pastry cream] flavored with ground almonds and used as a filling or topping for pastries and cakes." And I knew it was simple ~ and better yet, inexpensive ~ to make, so that wasn't the problem, either.

No . . . it was the pronunciation. I couldn't bring myself to say that word out loud. I wouldn't disgrace myself by attempting the drawling French, "FRAWN-zhee-pan," and I felt ridiculous sputtering out the idiomatic, "frangeepanee." But then, something wonderful happened that helped me to achieve complete liberation ~ in this area, anyway.

I was in the process of making custard tarts, not frangipane custard but something that looked similar, when an individual walked past who, although as American as myself, happens to be a fluent French speaker with enough innate Frenchness to be credible. He pointed at my handiwork and said, "Oh, is that fran-juh-pahn?" Ah-ha! "No," I answered, holding my breath a little, watching him carefully. "No, it's not fran-juh-pahn." "Hmm. Too bad," he said, shrugged, and walked off. Yes! That was it! The middle road ~ a pronunciation that was neither too French nor too Yankee but just right. And so, liberated in this way, I immediately set about finding a recipe to express my newfound freedom. And here it is.

Vive la fran-juh-pahn!

Peach Frangipane Tart
  • 3 large fresh peaches, peeled, pitted, and thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla sugar or granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen (not thawed)
  • 1 recipe Frangipane (follows)
  • 1 pastry for single-crust pie
  • 2 tablespoons mild honey, warmed (optional)
  • Turbinado sugar
For Frangipane:

  • ½ cup blanched almonds (whole or slivered)
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • Pinch sea salt
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • ¼ teaspoon ground vanilla bean or ¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons (1.5 oz) butter, at room temperature
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spray a rectangular or circular tart pan with removable bottom with nonstick pan spray. Lay pie pastry over tart pan and ease into place, lifting sides and gently molding them to fit the corners and interior edges of the pan. Fold the excess loosely over the top and run rolling pin over to cut off excess.
  2. To make the Frangipane: Combine the almonds, sugar, and salt in a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles fine meal. Add egg, almond extract, and vanilla bean or extract and pulse to mix. Add butter gradually, pulsing to incorporate. Use a spatula to scrape down the bowl of the food processor and pulse again to mix thoroughly. Spoon a layer of Frangipane into crust, about 1/4 inch thick. Use a small offset spatula to distribute it evenly over the bottom of the crust.
  3. Toss peach slices in lemon juice, then sprinkle vanilla sugar over and toss again to coat. Starting at one end of the rectangular tart (or on the outside edge of the circular tart), arrange peach slices so that they overlap slightly. Place blueberries around the outside of the row of peaches. Brush peaches with the warmed honey and sprinkle with the turbinado sugar.
  4. Place tart in preheated oven and bake until the Frangipane is puffed and golden and the peaches are tender when pierced with the tip of a paring knife. To serve, let cool on rack until barely warm, then unmold and dust with confectioners' sugar or top with vanilla ice cream or creme anglaise. Refrigerate leftovers.
Recipe Notes:
  • You can make this without blueberries, but the visual contrast of the dark purple-blue against the yellow-orange of the peaches is appealing. If blueberries aren't available, you can substitute raspberries.
  • I used yellow peaches for my tart, but feel free to try white peaches, Saturn peaches, or white or yellow nectarines. You can leave the peel on if you prefer, but I find the texture interferes with the silkiness of the Frangipane.
  • You can use whichever pie crust recipe you like. Dorie Greenspan's version of sweet tart pastry has never let me down, and I like Cindy Mushet's pie pastry, though I do substitute a few tablespoons of shortening for some of the butter to help it hold its shape in the tart pan.


The Duo Dishes said...

Doesn't matter how you say it, as long as you can eat it easily!

Cancemini4 said...

Saw this on Tastespotting, looks amazing! For the actual frangipane, do you just mix the ingredients together or does it need to be processed? I love almond recipes and can't wait to try this one, thanks for sharing!

Sandy Smith said...

~Cancemini4: Thank you so much for calling out my omission! I've added the missing step above ~ the ingredients for the frangipane are processed in a food processor. I'm really grateful you took the time to let me know!! :)

Jillian said...

Wow. First, what a great photo! Second, this looks delicious. I am going to make this over the weekend with whole vanilla beans instead of the ground vanilla! Beanilla Trading Company (love that name!) carries both, the ground and the whole beans at really good prices. www.beanilla.com is where I found em.



Ciao Chow Linda said...

absolutely gawjuss! This reminds me of a similar tart I made with apricots and blueberries that was a Lidia Bastianich recipe.

Diana H said...

Thanks for the pronounciation. I wasn't sure either. Leftovers? You had leftovers? I'm not sure I could keep them away long enough.

Sophie said...

Wow!! Your tarte looks fabulous!!!

Just pure indulgence!! MMMMMMMMMM,....

Betherann said...

Wow, amazing!! Not only are you a great baker, but your photography is wonderful. :)

Amber said...

I adore peach pie, peach tart, peach crisp, and peaches. Yum.
Last year you commented on my blog regarding the table settings from a charity luncheon. The event just finished again and I just put the first post up if you are interested.

Jeff said...

Trade you pot roast for this? When I get through bread baking I want to pick up desserts but really really really scared since I have gained to much just from bread baking.

You are also making me really miss peach season :-( but luckily the stores still have some decent ones.

Awesome job!!!!!

Julie said...

Your tart is beautiful!
My son had a teacher in his 2nd grade special needs class named Mrs. Frangipane. She let them call her Mrs. Fran!

Tracy @ Sugarcrafter said...

Oh, WOW does this look. I need to try this!

Paula - bell'alimento said...

Sandy that is beautiful! I love pears & don't cook with them often enough. Can't wait to try this!

Judy said...

I'm going to try a tweaked version of this. It's just a little different from the frangipane recipe I usually make. Thanks for sharing.

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